The essential services your RACF’s podiatrist needs to provide

 

Over the last few years we have seen a rise in specific medical treatments and specialists tailored to the aged care sector. Most RACFs worth their salt now have a range of professionals who specialise in aged care and can directly target the needs of seniors and facilities.

One of the most important of these is podiatry, which has represented a huge step forward in providing the ability to keep Aussies moving well into their old age. In this article we’ll look at a few key issues surrounding podiatry from both a treatment and business perspective, and the essential services these allied health professionals should be providing to an RACF.

The best way for podiatrists to work is through consistent and regular appointments.

The type of service required

Unlike other allied health professionals who may only be required when something goes wrong, the best way for podiatrists to work is through consistent and regular appointments. A loss of mobility is something that can creep up on a senior – taking place over a long period of time.

That’s why the industry standard for podiatry appointments is once every eight weeks, although there are some seniors (such as diabetics) who may require more frequent sessions.

Not only do regular appointments allow an experienced podiatrist to assess any risks to a senior’s mobility, they also provide an easy opportunity to clear up other smaller issues that may arise as part of general foot health.

While consistency is important, there are some podiatry providers who have policies for appointments more frequently – up to every six weeks or even more regularly than that. If this is the case with your current provider, then you are simply being overcharged, with a six-weekly podiatry schedule adding more than 30 per cent of extra expenses annually and failing to meet industry standards.

Podiatry is about more than just addressing specific issues. It's about retaining mobility. Podiatry is about more than just addressing specific issues. It’s about retaining mobility through regular appointments.

The business side

Podiatry needs to be looked at from a responsible financial perspective as well as in terms of resident wellbeing. While regular appointments are crucial, it’s important that this doesn’t clash with quality of care. As per Medicare requirements, the service should last for at least 20 minutes. Any shorter than this, and you may be in danger of noncompliance, as well as compromising the health and wellbeing of residents.

To ensure that residents are receiving a quality service, you need to be sure that you’ve got the very best podiatrists on your team. Employment is always critical in the health care sector, but recruiting great podiatrists is one of the best investments you can make in your facility.

An expert podiatry provider should also be billing in bulk for all eligible residents across a facility. This will require a thorough understanding of DVA and Medicare CDM requirements, but is crucial in ensuring there isn’t any unnecessary cost for residents or RACFs.

By keeping these factors in mind, you and your podiatry team will be able to keep residents mobile and independent. If you have any further questions, get in touch With Australian Health Professionals today.

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